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Hyperion Records

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At the Piano by Robert Beyschlag (1838-1903)
Anthony Mitchell Paintings, Nottingham / Fine Art Photographic Library, London
Track(s) taken from CDA67374
Recording details: January 2002
Champs Hill, West Sussex, United Kingdom
Produced by Mark Brown
Engineered by Julian Millard
Release date: June 2003
Total duration: 3 minutes 6 seconds

'Other singers over recent decades have given the songs an airing from time to time, but Thomas Allen is the very man to do it' (Gramophone)

'With piano-playing by that most sensitive of accompanists, Malcolm Martineau, Sir Thomas Allen brings high art to these songs … with an affectionate regard to mood and feeling, and with a touching lyrical sincerity' (The Daily Telegraph)

'A fitting tribute to this repertory that one of the finest operatic voices of our day has chosen to record it' (Classic FM Magazine)

'I must confess that, what with the beauty of Thomas Allen’s voice and the lovely accompaniment of Malcolm Martineau at the piano, a tear welled in my eye more than once. Another distinguished release from Hyperion' (Liverpool Daily Post)

'Hyperion here brings us Sir Thomas Allen caressing 29 well-loved parlour songs with his warm, expressive baritone … Malcolm Martineau provides his usual sympathetic and well-etched pianistic support' (Birmingham Post)

'what quality of nostalgia, and what depth of conviction … Superb performances … Martineau’s carefully moulded accompaniments enhance a glorious enterprise' (Yorkshire Post)

There's a long, long trail a-winding
First line:
Nights are growing very lonely
composer
1913
author of text

Introduction
This song was written for a college fraternity banquet at Yale University, where lyricist and composer both studied. Composer Zo (short for Alonzo) Elliott was apparently inspired by Napoleon’s retreat from Moscow; but Stoddard King’s words describe a homeward trail to romance. Elliott could not find a publisher in the USA, but did so in England when he went to study at Trinity College, Cambridge. The song then became a great favourite of British troops during World War I. Elliott later studied with Nadia Boulanger at the American Conservatoire at Fontainebleau in France, and a manuscript copy of the song was lodged among relics of World War I in the Musée de l’Armée at the Hôtel des Invalides in Paris.

from notes by Andrew Lamb 2003

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